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Poster: Jim F Date: Sep 11, 2010 1:20am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: New Potato Caboose

Ah, no need for apologies, not long ago I myself got hung up on writing up rants about the social aspects/changing fanbase stuff.

My bad, it was The Other One, not The Eleven. I really need to pull that one out again, it's been a long time.

You know, I have also often claimed that despite it's shortness and lack of vocals, you really can't find a better Eleven than 2/11/69. It's one of those ones you know by heart, ya know? I'll never forget buying that release on Halloween of 1997, back then I didn't have quite the collection I have today and I'd never really thought anything could match up with Live/Dead. Then 2/11 came along. I must have played that thing thousands of times. Speaking of the date and of The Eleven, as well as the subjectivity of GD music, I just cannot understand how one could put 2/12 so high on their list. Sorry, Cliff! I just don't hear the magic on that one like you do so many others (ie 2/11). To each his own, though!

It was the release of 2/11 that sent me off on a mission to collect every minute of Caution ever played (the halfass allusions to it that came post-74 don't count, though I think I have all of those as well). To this day, that Eleven>Caution is one of my most beloved moments of recorded GD history. I remember for years trying to find 2/5/69, it being one of the only other listings in Deadbase for an Eleven into Caution (3/17 and 10/20/68 being the only other, and excellent, versions that I can think of), and being so disappointed by it, mostly because of the brutal cut in one of the most essential, or my most favorite anyway, parts of Caution, the fanning intro. For me, ever since 2/11 came out, I've put every Caution up to comparison with it, and I dunno if any have ever met the standard (ok ok, if you catch me on a day when I've listened to any of a half dozen or so of them that are high rankers, I'd probably change that statement, but RIGHT NOW, nothing tops 2/11). I don't know what it was about 2/11 inspired them that night. Though they were limited Avalon style to such short sets and couldn't quite stretch out like they would a few weeks later at the Fillmore, I think the time constraints, as well as it being the New York audience and all the backstory surrounding Janis, just brought out the magic that night. Moreso in the late show, the early show is very nice but doesn't excel in the ways the late show does.

As I hadn't yet become the obsessive collector I would be just a short time later, I don't think I appreciated the immensity of the 2/11 release then like I would if something of it's kind were to come out now. That must have blown everyone's minds, like when Two From the Vault came out. Back then I didn't have the internet, torrenting was still years away (FTP servers were barely even on the radar), and while not my only source, I didn't have many connections and my primary resource for new material was through recording the GD Hour, which in St. Louis was followed by another hour of GD material played by the local DJ's on one of St. Louis' finest contributions to music (no, not Nelly), public radio station KDHX. Unfortunately KDHX had to drop the GD Hour a while back, the GD Hour was the only program they had to pay for, and KDHX being completely funded by listener support, they just couldn't afford to keep it on anymore. They still do a couple hours of GD music, though, it's just not the official Gans version.

Anyway, I have a couple versions of 12/29, I definitely had it pre-Millerized (probably from TOL back in the day). That's odd that a Miller source would introduce flaws, usually his product REMOVES the OLD flaws. Weird. At any rate I will pull it out soon.

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Poster: William Tell Date: Sep 11, 2010 10:26am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: New Potato Caboose

Ah, music to my ears! The love of 2-11! Perhaps we've spoken of it before, but I've few memories of anyone jumping in with me on that one (of course, as tunes go, it was one that often was done "well", if you follow, and almost always "okay"...as opposed to say StSt, which morphed so dramatically between Jun 68 and Aug 71 that one struggles with the different approaches to the song by the boys as well as "off night/on night", much less sound quality...if you follow me...? I suppose the simplistic notion is that the Eleven was generally a song played in a consistent fashion.

I in part really like 2-11 because as I may have told you, my eldest son, the music man in the family, who tolerates my "you must hear this!" better than any other family members, was the one to say "uh, pops...the eleven you're playing right now is not as good as this one you played for me a month or so ago" and then he pulled out the 2-11 show!

I was shocked and proud at the same time.

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Poster: Jim F Date: Sep 12, 2010 3:00am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: New Potato Caboose

I think I remember reading about that Eleven story with your son. I probably just didn't chime in on that thread. Like I said somewhere in this thread, longtime reader, but I only comment when I get the urge or "if I have the time."

Yeah, I don't think I've ever not liked an Eleven. Though it had such a short life, it did go through it's own transformations (though not as drastically as your example of St. Stephen), and I love them all. From the totally raw versions of early 68, to the faster and more developed versions later in the year, to the more "standard" approach with it's usual themes heard in early 69, to the slowed down, bouncy, groovin' versions of late 69/early 1970. Every one's a winner in my book. Though I still don't hear why 3/1/69 ranks so high in listener polls. Sure, the fun, brief little jam of Garcia with Billy at the end is really cool, but the version is like the shortest one on record, and doesn't really go very far. Nothing like 2/28/69 or 8/24/68 or or 2/5/70 or anything else along those lines.

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Poster: William Tell Date: Sep 12, 2010 7:08am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: New Potato Caboose

That's what so great about this place; this exchange leaves me with a feeling we're old friends, or new ones that share an experience that is so significant, it bonds you forever...I know, I know; talk about pathetically melodramatic, but the way you just described the Eleven is precisely how I think of it.

Oh, and I didn't mean to imply I don't like all the different manifestations of StSt, as I do, but the Eleven varied over a much narrower range of variation/exploration/etc, as you note.

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